Friday, November 27, 2009

The Fire: A Novel

The Fire, a novel by Katherine Neville is a breathtaking sequel to her novel The Eight. Through thorough research Neville takes the reader through her findings of the origins of the chess set and its game. She skillfully adds mystery and intrigue to the plot of this novel. The reader is weaved around different places in the world and different characters who put you on tenterhooks wondering what will transpire next and where you will land next.

The story is centred around the chessboard and the pieces on the chessboard; the black and white queens play important roles while other characters appear to be caught up in the game that takes you on a mysterious detective ride. As a reader, you are coaxed to solve the mystery with the main characters in the novel; you are introduced to high flying socialites; Neville is very adept at bringing in scenes of an environment where dinners—lavish or not are prepared meticulously and served with great flare to the immense pleasure and enjoyment of the dinner guests. She creates these dinner preparing scenes amidst exploring the mystery at hand. This adds further intrigue as the characters are either trusted or mistrusted for their roles in the overall game of chess.

Neville cleverly takes the reader back in history while, in a jolt, brings you back to the current day in an attempt to solve the chess board puzzle that relates to her characters’ lifestyles and even some of their deaths. The reader is taken through many meandering pathways and proverbial sayings that leads to the ultimate solution.

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